Deepti Sharma had a field day at the Pallekele International Stadium on Friday as her all-round performance guided India’s women’s cricket team to a four-wicket win against Sri Lanka in the first One Day International.
Deepti was adjudged the player of the match for claiming three wickets and following it up with an unbeaten 22. After restricting Sri Lanka to 171, India was struggling at 138 for six, when Deepti forged a 38-run partnership with Pooja Vastrakar, who remained unbeaten on 21, to guide the team home.
“We knew how the wicket is and we just had to work our partnership and we did that. We were thinking of picking up three to four runs in an over because we knew that if that could be done, we would definitely build a partnership. We were also talking about finishing it off quickly,” Deepti said about the partnership in a virtual media interaction.
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“Wickets were tumbling in between, but my idea was simple: I need to finish the game. Even when Richa (Ghosh) was at the crease, we were thinking of picking up three or four runs per over and aim closer to the target…”
In our meeting, it was decided that we should focus on 30-40 run partnerships and aim to achieve our target. We played accordingly and got the result. - Deepti Sharma
Deepti revealed that in the team meeting it was decided that the side will look to build smaller partnerships. She was happy to execute the plan to perfection. “In our meeting, it was decided that we should focus on 30-40 run partnerships and aim to achieve our target. We played accordingly and got the result.”
Talking about her preparations before the series, Deepti said, “Before joining the camp, I worked hard on my batting and bowling and developed a few shots. I think you got to see that on the field. My target always remains to finish the game for the team…”
The fixture was also Harmanpreet Kaur’s first assignment as the ODI captain of India. Deepti said that the team enjoyed playing under her. “She is always cool and calm - be it in T20Is or ODI. She handles situations in a cool and composed manner and makes decisions accordingly. We were enjoying her captaincy,” Deepti said.